The Presidential Candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), John Mahama has indicated that the party’s ‘Kyemu Pe’ policy for the tertiary education will cost approximately Gh¢500m.

Speaking in an exclusive interview with Joy News’ Emefa Apawu, Mr Mahama added that if voted in power, the NDC will absorb the tuition fees of all first year tertiary students.

“Our Education Committee came up with the recommendation and said that the fees that the first years pay are much bigger than that of the continuous students so if we do the ‘Kyemu Pe’, they are not likely to benefit as much as the continuous student and so we should do something more significant for them,” he explained.

As such, the party updated its Manifesto to include the “Fa Ninyinaa” policy to cover tuition fees for first years students in tertiary institutions while continuing students remain on the ‘Kyemu Pe’ scheme.

“We decided that for first years, we would cover the full fees to cushion them for the first year and then for the continuing students we will do the ‘Kyemu Pe’ policy.”

“For the ‘Kyemu Pe’ that was across from the first year to the fourth year, we came to about 400 and something million and so if we add the additional, another 50% to first years, it will come to a little over 500 and something million.”

This according to him, will help cushion the first-year students as the ‘Kyemu Pe’ policy may not cover all their needs.

Responding to comments about whether the introduction of the policy at this late stage of the campaign was an afterthought, the former President stated that it was merely an enhancement of their existing policy which was brought forward by the NDC’s Education Committee.

“As we go on, we continue to announce more initiatives because you come across some things that were not captured completely and then you just enhance it, this is not even a new announcement, it’s just an enhancement.”

He added, “maybe even between now and 7th, there are some more announcements that we will do. We are looking at something in the road transport sector, so that could be a major announcement.”

Meanwhile, within hours of the NDC’s announcement of their updated educational policy on Tuesday, December 1, the Registrar of the Ghana Scholarship Secretariat, Kingsley Agyeman, at a media engagement in Accra announced a scholarship scheme for the free SHS graduates.